By Matt Evans published
If you're over 50, you'll know staying fit becomes a little bit more difficult than it used to be. As your metabolism begins to slow, weight is gained easier and problems like menopause (for women, at least) throw a spanner in the mix, it becomes harder and harder to stay in shape.
However, it's not just about taking the best menopause supplements or keeping your diet under control: the way you exercise also needs to change as well, shifting priorities to maintaining a healthy range of motion and building a bit of muscle to offset the ageing process.
Kate Rowe-Ham is an expert personal trainer who works with menopausal and postmenopausal women to help them hit their fitness goals, so she knows a thing or two about tailoring her workouts to the over-50s.
"Sarcopenia, muscle decline... all these things happen as we age," says Kate. "This workout focuses on the seven patterns of movement that are fundamental as we age: Hinge, squat, lunge, push, pull, twist." Intrigued? You can check out Kate's seven-move circuit bash below which she filmed for our Instagram account, as she (along with her son Rupert) takes you through the moves step-by-step.
Watch Kate Rowe-Ham's over 50s fitness circuit below:
Why do this workout?
Even though this workout is billed as a weight loss circuit, Kate says it's important to reframe how and why we exercise as we get older. Changing our body composition, fighting ageing, remaining mobile and healthy should all take priority as we enter a different phase of life. Building muscle and staying active will help us lose more weight long-term than a straightforward treadmill circuit.
Kate said: "Being fit and healthy is more important than ever thanks to COVID, but when we get older it can sometimes be harder to shift stubborn pounds... We need to reframe how we think about exercise so we think about building lean muscle, strong bones, a healthy heart and mental health. So it all becomes a lot more sustainable."
During the second part of the exercise, Kate recommends you grab something heavy – you can check out our list of the best adjustable dumbbells, or you can grab water bottles, wine or anything else in a pinch. Kate mentions towards the end of the video we lose around 10lbs of lean muscle each year – training with weights and eating more lean protein can help undo this sign of ageing. Check out our best protein powder for weight loss guide for more.
Matt Evans is an experienced health and fitness journalist and Channel Editor at Fit&Well. He's previously written for titles like Men's Health and Red Bull, and covers all things exercise and nutrition on the Fit&Well website. Matt originally discovered exercise through martial arts: he holds a black belt in Karate and remains a keen kickboxer and runner. His top fitness tip? Stretch.
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